Those three words are the focus of each of the three previous courses in this series. Now comes the time to apply the fruits of the first three courses to market opportunities.
Hence: Value-Added Strategies.
We start where we should start: DESIGN. Value-Added Strategies aim to differentiate our product and service offerings. And at the top of the list—way ahead of any No. 2 in my view—is design.
Design is not easy to pin down. It’s products and services that work and are easy to use (great functionality). It’s products and services that are attractive, even beautiful (aesthetics). But it’s more—much more.
Rich Karlgaard describes Nest founder Tony Fadell’s approach, first by quoting him, “‘Every business school in the world would flunk you if you came out with a business plan that said, “Oh, by the way, we’re going to design and fabricate our own screws at an exponentially higher cost than it would cost to buy them.”’” (emphasis added) Karlgaard goes on, “But these aren’t just screws. Like the thermometer itself, they’re better screws, epic screws, screws with, dare I say it, deeper meaning.” (emphasis added)
Yes. Epic Screws. Screws with deeper meaning.
Or this, from a New York Times review by Tony Swan of the MINI Cooper S reported in Donald Norman’s book Emotional Design:
“It is fair to say that almost no new vehicle in recent memory has provoked more smiles.” (emphasis added)
Design as functionality.
Design as beauty.
Design as “screws with deeper meaning.”
Design as a car provoking “more smiles.”
Design writ (VERY) large as “Differentiator No. 1.”
Altogether, there will be thirteen value-added strategies offered up, ending with two that represent the biggest market opportunities in the world. Namely, the women’s market. Mantra: WOMEN BUY . . . E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G. And the “oldies market,” as I call it. Mantra: OLDIES HAVE . . . A-L-L THE MONEY.